Man City's David Silva to face Man United; Kompany, Delph doubts
MANCHESTER -- David Silva has been passed fit for the Manchester derby but Pep Guardiola faces an anxious wait on Vincent Kompany and Fabian Delph.
Silva missed the 2-1 Champions League loss to Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday, prompting United manager Jose Mourinho to accuse the City boss of mind games ahead of the derby.
Kompany and Delph both travelled to Ukraine but missed the game and Guardiola is waiting to see if they can be involved on Sunday.
"[Silva] is going to play," Guardiola told a news conference. 'The doctor told me at the beginning of the week, after the West Ham game, there was a build-up. There was a doubt about him playing, that's why I said what I said, but today he said he's really good, so he's going to play.
"Vincent Kompany in the training session before Shakhtar felt something. He was not comfortable and that's why he couldn't play. Fabian Delph was sick, he vomitted and had fever the day before.
"The only guys who didn't play because they needed rest were Kyle [Walker] and Nico [Otamendi] because they played the last eight or nine games including internationals. Today they are off so I don't know but tomorrow we will check how the conditions are."
A victory would see City extend their lead at the top of the Premier League to 11 points and equal Arsenal's record of 14 consecutive wins in the division.
But the last three victories have all been narrow wins against defensive sides with City needing late goals to secure the three points.
Mourinho is expected to take a cautious approach at Old Trafford and Guardiola says his side must be at their absolute best if they are to stop United setting a new club record of 41 successive games unbeaten at home.
"When you face the big teams, they demand a little bit more," he added. "They defend well -- I don't know how many goals they conceded at home, maybe one or two, no more than that.
"It's so complicated to score against them but that's the target. They don't only defend well, they create chances. When they arrive with [Anthony] Martial, [Marcus] Rashford, [Romelu] Lukaku, these kind of players, they can arrive and when they arrive in the boxes they are dangerous players.
"We cannot forget it's Manchester United and United have always had amazing players. When you play against big, big teams, if you don't give the best of yourself it's almost impossible to beat them, especially away at Old Trafford, but that's the challenge and it is nice to face this challenge."
While Mourinho is likely to offer a defensive setup, Guardiola should stick to his attacking principles to secure the three points.
But the City boss insists they do share the same philosophy in their desire to win trophies.
"Definitely, in that, we are twins," Guardiola added. "They want to win trophies, we want to win trophies. I think Antonio Conte is the same as well, and Jurgen [Klopp] and Mauricio [Pochettino], and in all the leagues around the world, the managers are there.
"I never criticise my colleagues for the way they play. I never did in the past, I will never do it. Football is magnificent for that, because every manager plays in the way they play. There are different ways to enjoy football. It's simple like that."
Jonathan is ESPN FC's Manchester City correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @jonnysmiffy.